veteransparkslide_1Ayden is a town in Pitt County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 4,932 at the 2010 Census. The town is a part of the Greenville Metropolitan Area of North Carolina’s Inner Banks region.AydenLogo  Ayden is known for many things, but one of its most renowned features remains eastern North Carolina style Bar-B-Que.  From Bum’s Restaurant to the Skylight Inn(Pete Jones) BBQ voted the #2 best BBQ bums0466restaurant in the US by Intelligent traveler of National Geographic Magazine, you’re certain to find all the delicious bar-b-que one can possibly handle!

History of Ayden

In 1891, William Henry Harris asked the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad to build a train depot on a portion of his farm in order to create a village. A 40-acre (160,000 m2) parcel of land was divided into residential lots surrounding the depot in “Harristown”, with Harris owning every other lot. Within the next several years, lots were sold and homes built. Businesses began to open up to support the new residents, and on February 3, 1891, the town was incorporated as “Ayden.” Within a few years, the Carolina Christian College and the Free Will Baptist Seminary were established. By 1919, Ayden had full-time electricity supplied by the Ayden municipal light plant. In 1922, the Mutual Building and Loan Association of Ayden was organized to help families obtain mortgages to build homes in Ayden.

After experiencing tough times during the Great Depression, and after the Second World War, the town began to grow. To accommodate the growth, commercial, cultural, religious, and other establishments were opened within and around Ayden. The community is still growing today thanks to the continued development of Greenville as an industrial and economic center for eastern North Carolina.

Government Structure

Ayden has used the council-manager form of government since 1957. Under this form of government, the Town Board of Commissioners is the final authority of most matters related to managing the government. The Town Board employs a Town Manager to oversee the day-to-day operations of the Town. The Mayor and Town Board of Commissioners are the governing body of the Town. The Mayor acts as the official head of the government and spokesperson of the Board. The Mayor presides at all meeting of the Board and signs all documents authorized by the Board.

The Mayor Pro-Tem is selected by each new Board, and assumes all duties and responsibilities of the Mayor in his absence. The Mayor and Town Board, together, are responsible for establishing the policies for the general operation of the Town. The Town Board adopts ordinances, resolutions, budgets, authorizes contracts, and approves the financing of all Town operations. The Board also appoints the Town Manager and Town Attorney, along with members of various boards and commissions.


Education in Ayden is administered by the Pitt County Public School System. The three schools located in Ayden include Ayden Elementary School, Ayden Middle School and Ayden-Grifton High School.

Higher education is provided by Pitt Community College, located between Ayden and Greenville. East Carolina University is located in downtown Greenville.Ayden Collard Logo

Local Events

The Ayden Collard Festival is held the week immediately following Labor Day in September. The annual event started in 1975 and includes a Collard Queen contest which has been renamed as the Miss Ayden contest, sporting events, rides, live music, food, and a parade.